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.-418-420 DEARBORN STREE7 


Table of Contents. 


Introduction 5 

The Union Stock Yards 7 

The Slaughter of Cattle 8 

The King of Butchers 12 

How the Various Parts of the Animal are Utilized 16 

Butterine Factory 17 

Oil Houses 18 

Glue Factory 19 

The Slaughter of Hogs 20 

Smoke House 24 

The Slaughter of Sheep ,24 

Wool House.. .28 



Main Entrance of Stock Yards Cover 

Dressing Beeves 9 

In the Beef Cooler 1 1 

Cooling Room, Butterine Department 17 

Press Room, Oil House , 18 

Sticking the Hog 20 

A Half Mile of Pork 21- 

Chopping Meat, Sausage Department 22 

Filling Skins, Sausage Department 23 

Driving Sheep to Slaughter 25 

'Killing Sheep 26 

After Slaughter 27 

Dressing the Sheep 28 



Among the many interesting sights of Chicago, few are more 
interesting than a trip through" the Union Stock Yards and Slaugh- 
ter Houses. No one should fail to avail themselves of the oppor- 
tunity to visit this great Stock Yards and Packing Town, which is a 
city in itself, there being between twenty and twenty-five thousand 
people employed here in the busy part of the year. 

Since the writer first visited the Stock Yards and Slaughter 
Houses he saw the great need of a guide to explain all he wished 
to know about the place, and now, after nearly five years' study 
about it, he takes pleasure in submitting to those who contemplate 

a trip through the Stock Yards and Slaughter Houses this book 

which gives a very true account of all the interesting sights of the 

place, and he hopes the book will prove a valuable help to such. 


The Union Stock Yards. 

The Union Stock Yards were built in 1865 and opened for traffic in 
December of that year. Business has continued to date and has stead- 
ily grown in volume. The Stock Yards property, or what is known as 
the original Stock Yards purchase, comprises 320 acres, bounded on the 
north by Thirty-ninth street, east by Halsted street, south by Forty-sev- 
enth street and west by Centre avenue. Since making the original pur- 
chase the Stock Yards Company have added to their possessions by 
the purchase of several smaller tracts of land for railroad yard pur- 
poses, so that now the Stock Yards cover more than 450 acres of land. 
The Stock Yards and Packing Town occupy all of the section of land 
bounded by Thirty-ninth street, Halsted street, Forty seventh street and 
Ashland avenue, except about 80 acres in the southwest corner, 40 ot 
which have been subdivided and the balance is a cabbage field. 

The entire system of all the railroads in the West center here. The 
*arge capacity of the yards, the facilities for unloading, feeding and re- 
shipping are unlimited. No other place in the world can receive, handle 
and care for such an amount of live stock as is cared for at the Chicago 
Union Stock Yards. This immense market received the following head 
of live stock during the year 1892 : 

Number of Cattle 3>57 I 796 

" Hogs 7-7 I 4,435 

" Sheep 2,145,079 

" Calves 197,576 

" Horses 86,998 

Largest receipts of Stock i day, i week, i month, i year. 

" Cattle 32,679 95.524 385-466 3.57^796 

" Calves 3,068 8,479 31,398 205,383 

Hogs 66,597 300,488 1,111,997 8,600,805 

" Sheep 18,797 58,683 227,316 2,182.667 

" Horses 1,237 3.679 12,927 101,566 


The capacity per day for live stock at the Chicago Union Stock Yards 

is as follows: 

50,000 Cattle, 200,000 Hogs, 30,000 Sheep, 4,000 Horses. 
A regular Horse Market is now established here. During the past 
year the Company has erected a new Horse Exchange Pavilion 185x530 
feet, at a cost of over $100,000, containing a display track 36 feet wide 
and over 500 feet long, with three places for turning, all covered by an 
iron dome and skylight, containing an amphitheatre capable of seating 
3,000 people, every seat commanding a fine view of the track. The build- 
ing is to be known as " Dexter Park Horse Exchange and Pavilion." It 
will be heated throughout with the Sturtevant hot-air blast, making it 
always comfortable in the most extreme cold weather. It is also lighted 
with the arc .and incandescent electric light; has an elegant buffet, lunch 
counter and fruit stand connected with it, also waiting and toilet rooms, 
thus making it the most perfect and complete place for selling and dis- 
playing horses and mules under roof in the world. 

The Officers of the Union Stock Yards Company are as follows: 
N. Thayer, President. 

John B. Sherman, Vice-President and Gen'l Manager. 
Geo. T. Williams. Secretary and Treasurer. 
J. C. Denison. Ass't Sec'yand Ass't Treas. 
Jas. H. Ashby, General Superintendent. 

The Slaughter of Cattle. 

Cattle received at the Union Stock Yards come from all parts of the 
country and maybe divided into two classes: class i, Native cattle; class 
2, Range cattle. The Native cattle are those produced in the States 
near to Illinois, which are Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, 
Kansas, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. Range cattle are those from the 
plains of Texas, Colorado, Montana and Wyoming. About three-fourths 
of all the cattle received at the Stock Yards are Native cattle. These 
are shipped by small farmers for market and are as fine a grade of cattle 
as can be found anywhere in the world. From this grade of cattle come 
the meats which are shipped all over the country in Refrigerator cars, 
and the quality of which is unsurpassed. The Range cattle are generally 
thin and unfit for cutting into the best grades of meat. 


The rules of the Stock Yards are, that the animals must be fed and 
watered before they are weighed, and without such weighing they cannot 
be sold. The lowest time that cattle can be pushed through the stock 
yard stage of their progress from the ranch to the killing-pen is twenty- 
four hours, and this, if any reason therefor appears may extend to sev- 
eral days. Then there is a rigid inspection by reliable officials that pre- 
vents any diseased beast being sent to the slaughter house for conversion 


into human food. From this point on all depends on the skill and care 
with which the converting of him is done. In either of the large slaught- 
ering establishments, Swift's, Armour's or Morris's, known as the " Big 
Three," the processes may be said to have attained perfection. Let us 
review the killing in the first named establishment. 

Each beast for slaughter is driven into a narrow separate pen, the 
cleanest pen he was ever in, where there is no sight or scent of blood to 
alarm or excite him. A man standing on a board walk above stuns him 


by a blow delivered with a heavy sledge upon his forehead. The concus- 
sion causes an abnormal rush of blood to his head and neck. Before he 
regains consciousness the door is raised, causing the animal to slide out 
upon the floor of the slaughter house. Then to make sure that the ani- 
imal is powerless his skull is again crushed in; a chain is then fastened 
to his hind legs and he is hoisted from the floor; his fore legs are spread 
wide apart and a man thrusts a sharp knife into his throat. The blood 
gushes out in a torrent; a man is draining the blood out of both arteries 
and veins by scraping on the outside of the hide with a shovel. The ut- 
most care is taken that this shall be thoroughly effected, as upon it de- 
pends in a great measure prevention of the tendency to decomposition 
that is inevitable where the blood is left standing among the muscular 

There seems to be an almost morbid fear of harboring somewhere 
about the place germs of decomposition that might taint the meat. The 
first element of security attained, that of thorough draining out of the 
blood is shown by the condition of the meat, and the fact that the heart 
when taken out is always found to be perfectly empty. But that is only 
the beginning. The men whose department of the necessary handling 
compels them to get blood on their hands must wash them instantly at 
the spouting hose close by. In all the subsequent handling for removal 
of the intestines and other internal parts, skinning, dividing into halves, 
washing and drying, from the time the animal was first hoisted until he 
is stowed away in the cooler, his flesh never touches the floor, and of all 
the forty-two men who handle him on the way, each doing some one par- 
ticular part and all working with the regularity of machinery and the 
speed of lightning, not one has laid a dirty finger upon him. 

The blood is washed down into a gutter which leads to a tank, from 
which it is pumped into covered carts and taken to the fertilizer house, 
to be put under treatment for conversion into a valuable fertilizer called 
" dried blood." 

Confining our attention to the one special steer, the next thing we 
see is the head being taken off; after this he is lowered to the floor and 
placed upon his back propped against sticks fastened to the floor. He is 
left in this position until his legs are broken, stomach opened and the 
hide skinned from the edges. Then with two hooks, one stuck behind 
each of the joints of the hind legs, he is hoisted to a position convenient 
for the butchers. After the tail is cut off, intestines taken out and the 
hide pulled off a little more, he is -hoisted from the floor, never to touch 



it again. On two tracks above are wheels from which hooks are hang- 
ing; these hooks are placed in and the others taken from the joints of 
the hind legs; then two men pull the hide while another man pounds and 
separates it from the flesh with a cleaver. The hide is then straightened, 
out upon the floor by men with long poles; this is done to see if there are 
any cuts in the hide and if there be any it is kept separate from the others 
The hides are sent to a cellar where they are salted and folded, then they 
are ready to be sold. 


While the hide was being inspected a man was dividing the steer into 
halves by using a large heavy cleaver. The next moment we see men 
trimming the ragged edges and carefully washing and drying the meat. 
The meat is then numbered, tagged, weighed and hung in a cooler, at a 
temperature of 38 degrees F., where it remains forty-eight hours; at the 
end of this time it is again weighed; this is done to find the percentage 
of loss in weight, which will average about 3 per cent. Just eight minutes 


have passed from the time the animal was knocked until he was finally 
stowed away in the cooler, although it can be done in five minutes. Two 
thousand five hundred cattle are killed in ten hours at this house. 

The King of Butchers. 

I here present to the reader the biography and record of the great 
butcher champion, M. F. Mullins, of Chicago. Mr. Mullins was born in 
Canandaigua, N. Y., in 1863. He moved west with his parents in 1869, 
settling in Hammond, Lake county, Indiana. At the age of 18 years Mr. 
Mullins started out in life for himself, and chose for his vocation the 
butcher business. He commenced his apprenticeship with the firm of 
Swift & Co., when their cattle business did not exceed sixty head per day. 
He has been in the service of this company continuously since, and has 
seen the business increase to the present capacity of 7,000 head per day. 
After eight years service with the company he was promoted to the posi- 
tion of foreman, which he has the present day. His first contest 
took place in the Exposition building in Chicago, Illinois, August 22d, 
1883, there being eight contestants for prizes, as follows: First prize, gold 
medal, valued at $250: second prize, $100; third prize, $50. The contest- 
ants worked their bullocks in the following order: 

Min. Sec. 
Walter Dennis, Bridgeport, 111. 7 39 

William Rader, Bridgeport, 111. 7 54 

Michael Sheck, Armour & Co., Chicago, 6 12 

M. F. Mullins, Swift & Co., Chicago, 4 5 

Pete Magee, Bridgeport, 111. 8 40 

Rod Laverty, Boston, Mass. 3 38 

Frank Noonan, Armour & Co. 8 40 

Joe Malone, Bridgeport, 111. 12 22 

This contest was principally considered on the best time made; good 
work was not regarded. Rod Laverty lost first prize by a foul claimed 
for not skinning out one hind leg. Mr. Mullins was awarded first prize, 


Rod Laverty second, and Michael Sheck third. This contest was before 
an audience of about three thousand people. 

. This mode of contest has been discontinued, owing to the unsatis- 
factory work done. It is now supplanted by contests under American 
rules, which are as follows: 

1. There shall be three judges, who shall be considered fairminded 
and honorable men, and thoroughly acquainted with the business. 

2. Cattle shall weigh not less than 1,400 pounds. 

3. Contestants will be allowed eight minutes to dress the bullock; 
judges to call time when the bullock is drawn up, front feet off and right 
hindleg broken; dresser to call time when finished. 

4. After dresser calls time he will not be allowed near carcass or 
hide until after judges have made their inspection when, by having every- 
thing perfect, dresser will be credited with 100 points in time of eight 
minutes; points to be considered as follows: 

1st. For opening, reining and siding bullock, 15 points. 

2d. " leging, 5 points. 

3d. " rumping and backing 15 points. 

4th. " splitting, 15 points. 

5th. " clearing shank and dropping hide, 10 points. 

6th. " time, 20 points. 

7th. " general neatness. 10 points. 

8th. ' condition of hide, 10 points. 

This constitutes the 100 points to credit. The following points will be 
deducted for the following defects: Twenty points off for every minute 
over the allotted eight minutes, and ten points in his favor for every minute 
less than allotted time. Under these rules Mr. Mullins's second match 
took place October 19,1887, at the Exposition building in Chicago. 111., 
with the exception that twenty-five minutes instead of eight were allowed 
to dress the bullock. There were nine contestants in this match. The 
judges were men of good standing and judgment and decided to the sat- 
isfaction of contestants and audience. One of them was from Boston, 
one from New York and one from Chicago. 


Min. Sec. Points. 

Mr. Mullins won first prize, $100, 10 97 

Larry Noonan won second, $50, 12 94 

Joe Smith won third. $25, 11 45 81 

At this contest there were over 3,000 people. These American rules 
which governed this contest as well as all others since bring out a better 
class of workmen, who find it to their advantage to do good work, be- 
sides being swift. 

Mr. Mullins's third match took place in the Exposition building, Chi- 
cago, 111., October I5th, 1889, before an audience of 8,000 people. Mr. 
Mullins worked his bullock last, and after the decision was given by the 
judges, there was great shouting by Mr. Mullins's admirers. Three cheers- 
were then given for the champion beef dresser of the world, Mr. M. F. 
Mullins. After the excitement had quieted down Mr. Mullins thanked 
the judges and audience in a neat little speech, also his coworkers. Then 
Mr. G. F. Swift walked up to the judges's stand and presented Mr. Mul- . 
lins with a handsome roll of bills. He was closely followed by Mr. E. C. 
Swift, of Boston, who also gave Mr. Mullins another roll of bills in ad- 
miration of his skill and activity as a beef dresser, and for so nobly rep- 
resenting their firm in the contest. The prizes were as follows: 

Min. Sec. Points. 

First prize, $300, Mr. M. F. Mullins, 8 50 119 
Second " $200, Mr. J. Smith, 10 116 

Third " $100, Mr. Larry Noonan, 9 50 104 

Mr. Mullins's fourth contest took place in Union Park, San Fran- 
cisco, Cal., May i8th, 1890, before an audience of 12,000 people, for 
$1,000. This contest was between Mr. Mullins and Mr. Westphall, of 
San Francisco, who was champion of the Pacific slope. The match was 
under the same rules as the two preceding contests, excepting that con- 
testants were allowed but eight minutes to dress the bullock instead of 
twenty-five. In the toss for choice of bullocks Mr. Westphall won, and 
in the toss for working last Mr. Mullins won. The time was as follows:. 

Mr. Westphall, 6 minutes, 42 seconds, making 85 points 
Mr. Mullins, 7 " 7 " 127 " 


After the judges had inspected the bullocks it was found that Mr. 
Westphall had done very poor splitting and siding and had scored the 
hide greatly, for which he lost several points. Four proprietors of the 
largest tanneries in San Francisco inspected Mr. Mullins's hide and pro- 
nounced it as being the best work done on any hide ever taken off in the 
country. Mr. Mullins was then declared winner and the champion of the 
world, being presented with a fine gold medal. 

Mr. Mullins's fifth and last match took place at Willow Springs, 
-Chicago, July 26th, 1890, under the auspices qf the County Commission- 
ers of Cook County, Illinois, in honor of Governor Palmer, who was at 
that time a candidate for the United States Senate, and has since been 
-elected. This contest was between Mr. Westphall and Mr. Mullins. 
Mr. Westphall still thought he could beat Mr. Mullins and win back 
some of the money lost in the previous contest, as well as the champion- 
ship honors. The audience numbered 15,000 people. In this race Mr. 
Westphall got choice of bullocks again and worked first. Time as fol- 

Mr. Westphall 6 minutes, 43 seconds, scored 107 points. 
Mr. Mullins 5 minutes, 42 seconds, scored 121 points. 


Opening, reining and siding 15 

Working of legs 5 

Rumping and backing 15 

Splitting 15 
Dropping hides, clearing shanks 10 

Condition of hide 10 

General neatness 10 

Time 20 

Fast time, 10 points gained per minute 

Slow time, 20 points lost per minute 

Mullins. Westphall. 
12 12 








Total points 




In this as in all other cases, all was excitement when the decision 
was made. Mr. Westphall made an eloquent speech declaring that Mr. 
Mullins was his superior, and that he had had a fair and square match 
both in San Francisco and Chicago. He also added that he was confi- 
dent there was not a man in this country who could beat Mr. Mullins in 
a beef dressing contest. Mr. Mullins was then presented with a fine gold 
watch by the four County Commissioners, valued at $250, and Mr. West- 
phall was presented with $200 in cash as a token of sincere regard for 
his good work, he being the only man who gave Mr. Mullins a close 

How the Various Parts of the Animal are Utilized. 

Now we want to know what becomes of the other parts of the ani- 
mal, or have a brief idea at least. 

The livers, hearts and kidneys are cleaned and trimmed and sold for 
food. The tallow which is trimmed from the intestines is sent to the oil 
houses to be converted into different grades of oleo oil. The bladders 
are filled with air, trimmed, dried and sold to bladder factories. The 
paunches and pecks, which are the first and second stomachs respectively 
of the cattle, are emptied and washed, then they are sent to the tripe 
room where they are pickled and sold as tripe. All other parts that 
cannot be sold for human food are sent to the tank room, where they are 
cooked in large tanks ; then it is called tankage, and after it is pressed it 
is taken to the fertilizer house, dried, ground and sold to farmers as a fer- 
tilizer. The grease is taken from the top of the tank water and used for 
making tallow. The tank water is pumped to the fertilizer house, where 
it is boiled down to a dark, thick jelly-like substance; it is then put into 
small pans holding about twenty-five pounds each, and placed in hot ov- 
ens, where it remains for about twenty-four hours; it is then perfectly 
dry, and after being ground it is sold to farmers as the most valuable of 
fertilizers, called concentrated tankage. 

The skulls, jawbones, horns, hoofs, in fact, all the bones are sent to 
the bone house, where they are cleaned, dried and made to look almost 
as white as snow. Neatsfoot and other oils are made in this building, 
from the marrow and fat taken from the bones. 


Butterine Factory. 


In visiting the Butterine factory, we start from the top floor and take 
in the sights as we go down through the different floors; in this way we 
start from the very beginning. When we get off of elevator at the top 
floor we first see the "souring room;" this room is filled with vats, or 
wooden tubs lined with tin or zinc. The " milk," for there is plenty of it 
used in the manufacture of butterine, is put into these vats; the room is 
then heated to a hot temperature, thus causing the milk to sour quickly. 
It is then put into churns and churned by machinery; when this is done 
it is transferred to mixing tanks and mixed with lard and oleo oil. These 
tanks are very large, made of iron; on the inside are revolving ladles, 



giving the stock a thorough mixing. Then the mixture is allowed to run 
out from the bottom of tanks into ice water, which causes the stock to 
harden and form on top. Next it is taken from the water by men with 
sieves and sent to a very warm room; the heat of this room causes the 
separate lumps to mix, after which the mixture is sent down to the "but- 
ter workers," which are tables that are kept rolling around under two 
cone shaped rollers. Over these tables are round sieves, containing 
enough salt for one table of butterine. After this is thoroughly worked 
the butterine is sent down to the packing room, where it is put up in dif- 
ferent size packages, and then sent to the shipping room to be branded 
and stamped; then it is ready for shipment. The retail price of butterine 
is from 14 cts. to 19 cts. per pound. The 14 cts. per pound being the 
common grade, and 19 cts. being the very best, or Extra Creamery 

Oil Houses. 




The oil houses are the cleanest places in Packing Town; the floors 
are kept so clean that a stranger sometimes hesitates to walk upon 
them. The press room men work in their bare feet and very light cloth- 
thing, the temperature being between 80 and 90 degrees F. On the top 
floor of the building the fat is being hashed and running from the hasher 
into slanting troughs, which lead to open kettles. By cooking this fat 
it is converted into oil; then it is drawn off from the bottom of kettles on 
the floor below and put in square wooden troughs which are lined with 
galvanized tin. This oil is called " oleo stock." While the stock grad- 
ually hardens men will stir it with their hands and arms occasionally. 
When it becomes mushy it is put into cloths, folded and then put into 
presses and pressed by machinery. It requires nearly two hours press- 
ing before all the oil is all separated from the cloths. As the oil separ- 
ates from the cloths it drops into a tank and is drawn off into barrels. It 
is of a yellowish color and has a very rich flavor; it is called oleo, or 
butter oil, and is used in the manufacture of butterine. When the oil is 
all pressed out, there is nothing in the cloth but a very hard white cake. 
This is called oleo stearine; it is used largely in the manufacture of cand- 
les, and also for compound lard. 

Glue Factory. 

The glue factory is a very interesting place for one having an oppor- 
tunity to visit it. A great many people have an idea that every glue 
factory sends out a sickening odor that is felt for miles around; but such 
is not the case with the glue factories of Packing Town, as all the mate- 
rial used is fresh from the slaughter houses. The different parts of the 
animal material used are pieces of hides, ears, horn piths, sinews of the 
feet of cattle, pigs' feet, sheep feet and other scraps that cannot be used 
for anything else. Nearly all of these are put through different pro- 
cesses. To explain each would require more space than is herein given. 
When the glue is made, it is drawn off into square pans, holding about 
fifty pounds each. When the pans are filled they remain in the chill room 
until the glue hardens; then they are taken to the top floor and held in 
hot water until the glue loosens from the side of the pans. The lump is 
then put into a machine, which cuts it into small thin cakes. These 
cakes are put upon wire racks in cages by girls, and when the cages are 
full they are lowered to the next floor by elevators for that purpose, 
and sent to the drying room where hundreds of cages of glue are hung 
and dried in a day. Afterthe glue is dried it is ground into small pieces 
and is ready for shipment. 


The Slaughter of Hogs. 

The hogs are generally shipped in double-deck cars by farmers from 
all parts of the country to the Stock Yards. When they arrive they are 

ow\Ci\Nik\_ PHOTO 


fed and weighed and when sold are sent direct to the shackling pen of 
the slaughter houses through viaducts erected fyr that purpose. These 
viaducts are more than a mile in length. By using these viaducts a drove 
can be kept together and also be free from danger in crossing the railroad 

The shackling pen is filled with hogs, and a boy in among them fast- 
ens a shackle upon one of the hind legs of the hog; a chain is hooked 
into a ring of the shackle and the hog is hoisted by machinery to a man 
who places the shackled hog upon a greased slanting rail; the end of the 
chain is then loosened and thrown back to theshackler again. When the 
hog is placed upon this greased slanting rail he slides down to the " stic- 
ker." Of course the hog is yelling more and louder than ever before, 



but as soon as he quits kicking and tries to think what has happened the 
sticker plunges a knife sharpened on both edges into his throat. After 
stopping a few seconds to let the blood drain out the hog is allowed to 
slide down the greased rail until he reaches a boy who places a hook in 

liH 0\(i\HKV PttOTO 


the ring of the shackle, and then allows the hog to slide off the end of 
the rail. The sudden jerk caused by the drop of the hog causes the 
shackle to slip off of his leg and he falls into a pan of hot water. He is 
then kept rolling in the water by men with poles until he reaches the end 
of the pen where there is an apparatus for throwing him out upon a table. 
The hair is then taken from his ears, after which he is fastened to the 
' scraper," a machine so arranged as to take almost all the hair off. After 
this he is scraped off by hand, of all the hair remaining in small bunches 
his head is then taken off. Next he is put upon a rail and pushed 



along to the " washing box," which is a small place containing iron pipes 
pointing out in different directions; the hog passes between these pipes, 
while the water rushes upon him with considerable force, giving him a 


thorough washing. From here he is sent to men who might be called 
' hog barbers," for they do nothing but shave hogs. When these men 
are through with him he looks very clean and white. Next his stomach 
is opened and the intestines taken out. This is done in short order by one 
man, and when through with him a swift stream; of water is forced all 
over him, giving the hog the last washing he is to have. He is then dried 
on the inside with cloths, and on the outside with knives run over him just 
as the barbers did; the knives take all the water off much better than the 
cloths do. After this is done the hog is- sent to two men who pull the 
lard out; one man will pull from the right side with the right hand while 
the other man pulls the lard from the left side of the hog with the left 
hand. After the lard is taken out the hog is- weighed. The lard is sep/- 


arately weighed and put into large kettles and rendered, making the 
" Pure Kettle Rendered Leaf Lard." The hog after being weighed is sent 
to the hanging room, where all the scraps and ragged edges are trimmed 
off; he is then divided into halves in this room. From here Ifltis low- 
ered to the chill room, or cooler, where he remains for a time varying 
from twenty-four hours to six days. The chill room is kept at a temper- 
ature of from 33 to 35 degrees F. About three minutes pass from the 
time the hog's throat was cut until he was ready to be sent to the chill 
room. The hogs are handled in one house by about thirty-five men, who 


get through with about 9,000 hogs in ten hours. 

Some of the hogs are sent to the cutting room, where they are cut 
up into different parts, such as bellies, pork loins, hams, shoulders and 
spare ribs. The pig's feet are pickled; the remaining parts are used in 
the sausage room for making bologna and sausage meat. The hams, 
shoulders and bacon are smoked in houses built for that purpose. 


Smoke House. 

There is not much to be said of the smoke house, but to begin with, 
let us make smoke. Corncobs are the best material that can be used for 
making the right kind of smoke, as they give the meat a sweeter flavor 
than anything else, but corncobs are not plentiful enough to be used the 
whole year round, and in this^ase, sawdust and logs of wood are used 
instead. The house must be thoroughly dried out before the meat is al- 
lowed to be smoked. This is done by burning logs of wood in the build- 
ing for about five hours. There are five floors in this building, separated 
from each other by thin iron rails, so as to allow the smoke to pass 
through the different floors until it reaches the top of the building, where 
it slowly escapes through several chimneys on the roof. Each ham is 
hung in the center of a small stick, which is placed across the rail, side 
by side. The hams, shoulders, bacon and beef tongues require from 
twenty-four to twenty-six hours smoking. As the hams require the most 
smoke, they are hung on the floor nearest the fire. The shoulders may 
be hung on this floor, also the next. The fourth floor is for bacon, and 
the fifth for tongues. The different floors can be regulated for the 
amount of smoke needed. There are from 5,000 to 10,000 hams smoked 
in this building every day. 

The Slaughter of Sheep. 

The sheep, when they arrive at the Stock Yards, are first fed and 
weighed, after which they are sold and then driven to the slaughter house 
through viaducts. When they reach the gate at the end of the viaduct, 
they see one or two sheep in a pen a few yards from them, each having 
a bell attached around their necks. These trained sheep are called the 
" leaders." When the gate is thrown open, all of the sheep run down to 
the "leaders" and follow them to the pen from which they are to be 
taken and slaughtered. The "leaders," after leading the sheep to this 
pen, get away fro n the others through a trick taught them, and then re- 
turn to their own pen, where more sheep may be waiting. These leaders 
are used to save time, and it will be noticed how quickly the sheep will 
follow them to the pen, much more quickly than they could be driven 
there by men. The leaders become so attached to their keepers that 
they take up the habit of chewing tobacco. , 


Now let the reader prepare for some unpleasant but interesting 
sights the slaughter of an innocent sheep. First, a shackle is put on 
one of the hind legs of each of the two sheep, which are hoisted up to- 
gether by means of a chain attached to the ring of the shackle, to a boy, 
whose duty it is to place small wheels with hooks attached, on the track 
overhead, from which the sheep are to hang. Then the sticker plunge 8 
a sharp knife into one side of the throat, cutting clean through, the head 


being alrrost severed from the body. This is a very pitiful sight to 
strangers; many persons have fainted away immediately after witnessing 
the slaughter of sheep, while the same persons will laugh and enjoy 
themselves at the sight of hog slaughtering. Another method sometimes 
used to cut the throat is as follows : Two or three men go into the pen, 
and each carry out one sheep in his arms; it is then laid upon a bench, 
where there are two iron stakes which are wide enough apart to allow the 
neck to enter. Then the sticker will bend the head backward, and thrust 



the knife deep into the throat, after which the sheep is hung up to allow 
the blood to drain out. One way is as pitiful as the other. The sheep, 
after their throats are cut, are sent to boys,, who rip the hide up the legs, 
then the legs are broken, after which a hook is placed behind the joints 
of each of the forelegs. He is then sent to a man to have the skin 
pulled from the neck and chest. Next he is sent to another man, who 
will trim the skin again from the neck and feet, and the hook to which 


the hind legs were fastened is taken away and two long hooks attached 
to a wheel on the track overhead are place'd in, and the other hooks are 
taken from the joints of the forelegs. From here the carcass is sent to 
men who take it from the long hooks and hang the hind legs upon small 
stationary hooks, which are on a beam about five feet from the floor. 
The skin is then torn off with marvelous rapidity, and horrible to relate, 
however, in less time than it takes to tell it. the head is taken off and the 
breast bone split open, after which the intestines are taken out. Then 
he carcass is washed, dried and all the ragged edges are trimmed off. 



After this is done, the carcasses are hung on racks and weighed, eight or 
ten at a time; then they are sent into the cooler, where they remain 
twenty-four hours at a temperature of 38 degrees F. When the sheep is 
finally stowed away in the cooler, he has been handled by twenty differ- 
ent men on the way, each taking some one particular part, and only five 
minutes have passed since the poor sheep drew his last breath. A cer- 




tain person has said that he marked the wool of a live sheep, just as it 
was being shackled, and ten minutes from that time he saw the very 
same wool he had marked on top of a load of sheep skins, which were 
being taken to the wool house. This may seem exaggerated to some 
extent, but when one takes into consideration the fact that only two 
minutes had passed when the skin was torn off, and that about 2,500 
sheep are killed in ten hours at this house, it will be admitted that such 
a thing is possible. 


M* OP\G\uia PHCPO 



Wool House. 

Now let us have a brief account of the wool house, which is a very 
interesting place to visit, although there is not a great deal to be seen at 
this place, and for this reason the writer will not be able to give a lengthy 
account, but will explain all of the most interesting facts, . 

The sheep skins are taken to the wool house and put into large vats 
to be washed; then after being washed, they are put into a linking ma- 
chine. This is made of iron and built somewhat similar to a common 
tub, on the inside of which is another tub fastened by a pivot. The wool 
is put into the inner tub, which is then made to go around very fast, 
causing the wool to press against the side of the tub and the water to 
pass into the outer tub, which remains stationary. From this machine 


the skins. are sent to the fourth floor, where they are washed with acid 
which loosens the wool from the skin. Next they are taken to the top 
floor to have the wool scraped off. The wool is then gathered up and 
put through a separator, which loosens and separates the wool. From 
the separator the wool is sent to a room below, then it returns through 
chutes through which the wool is sent to a large dryer, where the tem- 
perature is 214 degrees F. The wool is sent through this dryer five 
times, and after it has passed through the fifth time it is thoroughly dry. 
Then it is allowed to drop from the dryer into large bins on the floor be- 
low, where it is packed in large bags, which, when full, will weigh about 
200 pounds each. After the wool is taken off of the skins, they are put 
through a pickling process, after which they are cleaned and then sold to 

The illustrations in this book were 
taken from original photos by Stroh- 
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